The latest example of this problematic switch from stage to screen is the strongly acted Shook, Samuel Bailey’s debut play, which won the 2019 Papatango New Writing Prize and had a run at the Southwark Playhouse in November of that year.
Following a critically acclaimed run at Southwark Playhouse, a transfer to the West End’s Trafalgar Studios was in progress when lockdown intervened. Shook has now emerged in a filmed version so we can see what the “noise” was all about. And it’s a noise that is well worth your time.
Spectators will go away wiser and sadder from this encounter with Shook, but most of all they will go away remembering Samuel Bailey’s dialogue and Josh Finan’s barnstormer of a performance as Cain.
It’s sometimes a little difficult to take seriously how old everyone is meant to be in Romeo & Juliet but Erica Whyman’s modern-day production for the RSC, playing in rep now at the Barbican, never lets you forget.
Despite a cast including Christopher Eccleston and Niamh Cusack, this proves another disappointment of a Macbeth as the RSC starts is autumn residency at the Barbican.
Romeo & Juliet is not a tiresomely gimmicky ‘now’ production, but one marked all through by that close-worked RSC concentration on the text which always prompts interesting new thoughts about a play we know well.